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Politics Nation

News/Business. The Rev. Al Sharpton discusses the day's important political and human interest stories. New.

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Us 16, America 15, Rubio 8, Marco Rubio 7, Russel Simmons 5, Advair 4, Florida 4, Ted Nugent 3, Dennis 3, Campbell 3, Phillips 3, Barbara Boxer 3, Jason 2, Hadiya 2, Nugent 2, Blacksburg 2, Tucson 2, Lindsey 2, Diarrhea 2, Allstate 2,
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  MSNBC    Politics Nation    News/Business. The Rev. Al Sharpton discusses the  
   day's important political and human interest stories. New.  

    February 13, 2013
    6:00 - 7:00pm EST  

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this story of a former military officer telling his story out in a cabin fighting it out knowing it's all come to this. last night, here was a part of the human story, the american story, someone who just couldn't deal with what came. that "hardball" for now. thanks for being with us. "politics nation" with al sharpton starts right now. >> thanks, chris. and thanks to you for tuning in. tonight's lead, a more perfect union. president obama tells republicans to get on board or get out of the way. today, the president hit the road to promote the new second term agenda that he unvailed in the state of the union. >> he went outside the belt way to create change outside of washington.
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the message affairness. >> our job, as americans, is to restore that basic bargain that says if you work hard, if you're willing to meet your responsibleties, you can get ahead. it doesn't matter what you look like, it doesn't matter where you come from. >> fairness, justice, e quality. that was the president's focus last night on every single nation. creating a plan for the country that would create a more perfect union. >> make high-quality pre-school available to every single child in america. >> pursue a bipartisan market base to climate change. a bipartisan commission voting to improve the speens of america.
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equal benefits for their families, gay and straight. >> send me a comprehensive reform bill in the yies and i will sign it and america will be better for it. >> that's the promise from this president. and he won't let anyone stand in the way. he'll fight for what's right. just like he did on gun control. last night, he brought us to tears and he brought us to our feet. when he began to talk about hadiya pendleton, the teenager shot and killed just weeks after attending the inauguration. >> hadiya's parents, nate and cleo, are in this chamber tonight along with the two dozen americans whose lives have been torn apart by gun violence. they deserve a vote.
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>> gabby giffords deserve a vote. the families of aurora deserve a vote. and the families of oak creek and tucson and blacksburg and the countless other communities with gun violence, they deserve a simple vote. >> they deserve a vote. we never seen a moment like that in the state of the union. never. today, republicans are talking like nothing's changed. it's just the same old, same old in washington. but they're wrong. this president is different i. and so is this country. joining me now is bob schrum and michelle cottle. bob, this was a grand vision for the country, but how does he turn it now into reality. >> well, it is the most progressive vision that we've had in 40 or 50 years. it's going to be tough on some of this to get this done in this congress.
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i mean, i think he may get immigration reform. but when you get to things like assault weapons, you may have to take this into a 2014 election. this president has a way of defining history. he's done it before. he's going to use that popular support to try to prod the congress. and i believe if he doesn't, he's going to run all out next year. i think they'll have a super pac. i think that super pac will be making every bit as an effort as he did in 2012. that's what he has to do if he's going to get realized. you know, michelle, lindsey gram was out today slamming the
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president for cheer leading, his word, not mine, on gun safety. let me show you senator gram. >> last night, the president made a very emotional plea for us to vote on, what i think, quite frankly, is some of it will have a marvelous effect. some of it a dubious effect. we don't need a cheer leader. we need somebody to enforce the laws we have. >> now, the question i want to pose you, michelle is will public pressure put enough pressure on the house and the senate to vote on the gun bill's proposal? to make them vote on it? >> i think they're going to be voting on them. i think you have a really good shot at background checks. i do think that most people think the assault weapons band is just out of reach. and with this congress at this point in time, even a lot of
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democrats get very, very touchy about this issue. i think the assault weapons ban just isn't going to be an issue. >> if you have public pressure, if you have public groups organiziing and you have people like mayor bloomberg that are putting money up, we've never seen this kind of effort before on the other side in terms of gun legislation. so are we really gauging what we're used to? and the results, rather than an effort that may be something we're not used to? >> oh, sure. you can never predict this sort of thing. but, you know, you still have to target even democrats for whom, you know, gun culture is a big part of their state. so they're going to have to do a lot of focused effort. you're still looking at a house
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determined to dig its heels in. >> now, bob, let's look at key points of the whole agenda that the president has been raising in his fight for fairness. he's talking about raising minimum wage, universal preschool, a commission on voting, gun safety and immigration reform. now, will the president's outside gain help him force the republicans to budge at least on some of these issues? >> well, i think immigration reform has a real chance because of what republicans believe in. they'll still be hurt during that debate. some of their folks who oppose this are engaged in the kind of relate rik that was alienating folks earlier. it had a lot in it like states of the union messages do.
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now, the minimum wage, i think the senate is going to vote on it. and i think the house can be blamed if they won't move. i can tell you from all of the polling that i've seen over very many years, support for increasing the minimum wage is massive. all you have to do is look at that clip from lindsey gram. he's so afraid of a tea party challenge in south carolina, that this guy is willing to say something, like, the president's cheer leading for gun control. you know what i think the president was doing? he was channelling and speaking for the people who have lost loved ones all over this country because this country is becoming a free fire zone. >> and many of them sitting in that chamber last night. michelle, let he go back to bob's point on the minimum wage.
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>> one of the things that is stunning, absolutely stunning, working full time at minimum wage, they only earn $14,500. the poverty line is $15,130. >> how do you deal with the fact that a minimum wage is below the poverty line? do republicans really want america to be a country where you can work 40 hours a week and still live under the poverty line with a child? >> i think the problem that republicans -- they've painted themselves into a corner on the issue offing with deficit hogs. they have to worry about their right on all of these issues. you still have the on going civil war in the party. and a lot of it is over, you know, what the tea party has
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with this fiscal irresponsibility. so any time you're talking with something with bigger government or government paying out more money, the republicans have pretty much got themselves into a bind on that, no matter how rational it seems. >> it's also striking to me, bob, when the president really called the gop out for their obsession with spending and cuts and budget showdowns. >> the greatest country cannot keep drifting by one manufacturing to the next. pay our bills on time. and always uphold the full faith and credit of the united states of america. deficit reduction alone is not an economic plan. >> bob, how does he keep the momentum from that speech last night and turn it into action? >> he's got to go out there and
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speak over and over and over again. he's got to explain the chief to the american people. he knows that the austerity that the republicans want to adop here would send this into another session. he also knows that the republicans are going to oppose him every step of the way on things like minimum wage. he's got to go out there. this is not just about prodding the congress and trying to move stuff now. this is about changing the political landscape of america. permanently. and i think he can do that. i think it can be a transformational president as ronald reagan was. >> thanks for your time this evening. ahead, 41 standing ovations for president obama. but the gop refused to get up. senator barbara boxer joins me on the fights brewing in congress. they talk about change.
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they talk about rebranding. why does the gop savior sound gist like that other guy. ampbt r and the great music and media mo gull activist russel simmons is here live to talk about voting rights, fair vns and more. it's a big show coming tonight. stay with us. my insurance rates are probably gonna double.
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have you joined the "politics nation" conversation on facebook yet? we hope you will. today, everyone was talking
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about desaline victor, the 102-year-old florida resident that president obama highlighted during last night's speech. she made two trips and waited for hours to cast her vote. jason says such tenacity, honor and courage. we should all aspire to be like her. >> i agree, jason. bev says this part of the speech made me cry. obama stressing the importance of each vote. and maya says she was an inspiration. but we have to fix it. yes, we do, maya. and we'll be talking about the president's plan to fix it coming up. but, first, we want you to share your thoughts. please head over to facebook and search politics nation and like us to join the conversation that goes long after this show ends. we all work remotely so this is a big deal, our first full team gathering! i wanted to call on a few people.
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ashley, ashley marshall... here. since we're often all on the move, ashley suggested we use fedex office to hold packages for us. great job. [ applause ] thank you. and on a protocol note, i'd like to talk to tim hill about his tendency to use all caps in emails. [ shouting ] oh i'm sorry guys. ah sometimes the caps lock gets stuck on my keyboard. hey do you wanna get a drink later? [ male announcer ] hold packages at any fedex office location. [ male announcer ] pain not sitting too well? burning to feel better? itching for relief? preparation h offers the most maximum strength solutions for all hemorrhoid symptoms. from the brand doctors recommend most. preparation h. don't stand for hemorrhoids.
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we know our economy is stronger when our wives, our mothers, our daughters can live their lives free from discrimination in the workplace and free from the fear of domestic violence. >> i asked this congress to declare that women should earn a living equal to their efforts and finally pass the paycheck act this year. >> fairness, equality. it was the key theme of last night's state of the union. a popular message that the president will sell all across the country. last night, the president got applause 101 times and 41 of those were standing ovations. 41.
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but what struck me more than who was standing is who stayed seated. take a look at how some republicans responded to some key moments. >> that's the republican party. they won't stand up for women. they won't stand up for the poor. they won't even stand up for pre-schoolers. they won't even stand up for voting rights of 102-year-old woman. americans know who will standby their side and who won't. joining me now senator barbara boxer from california. >> it's pleasure to be here. >> let me ask you, senator. were you surprised to see so
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many republicans not standing up for what should be bipartisan ideas? >> well, reverend al, to be honest, i'm not surprised at anything. and i think that they just can't get over -- that this president was elected. they're still in their campaign mode, even though they should be in their governing mode. if you listen to marco rubio, honestly, it was a flash back to the '80s. government can't help you and the rest. we had heard that song before. the people have rejected it. they wanted a government that works for them. i have been so honored to be here for a while and i've served with five presidents and i know when they're in touch with the people and when they're not. this president is in touch with the people. he's in sync with the people. whether it's the women, the middle class, grandmas and grandpas, fighting for oir children to protect them from gun violence, fighting for their
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jobs, you go through it. he reflects the american people and the republicans are still in that campaign mode and they can't get over it. and it's sad. it's sad for the country. >> let me hold you right to that point. we've seen presidents and we know the partisan differences. but when you have boehner not standing up for the military, some couldn't stand up when the president praised our diplomats, intelligence officers and the men and women of the military who are serving in harm's way. watch this. >> as long as i'm commander in chief, we will do whatever we must to those who serve their country abroad and we will maintain the best military the world has ever known. >> i mean, not standing up for
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our men and women who are serving overseas. i've got to go back to your point. how much of this is about policy? and how much is this about the president personally? >> well, i have to believe, again, that they just cannot get over the fact that they lost this election. we picked up seats in the senate. they lost seats in the house. the president won in a fantastic race. he's got the support of the people. he's got the ear of the people. and they can't get over it. and it's to their detriment. i mean, you point this out. majs not standing up for men and women in uniform who have their lives on the line for us every single minute of every single day. they're still in afghanistan coming home, not quick enough for this senator, but coming home. and it's shocking. they have made politics personal and it's hurting the american people. this sequestering that's coming
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up, this is dangerous. this is a million jobs over a ten-year period. >> they're hurting the american people. and my message to them is my colleagues, you're hurting yourselves. people don't vote for people who are not fighting for this country. they're just not doing it. >> we heard the president's's address last night. the senate passed it. but 22 republicans, 22 republican senators, all men, voted against it including gop leaders, mitch mek connell and the gop savior marco rubio. >> this is ridiculous. this is a kbil that was crafted
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by joe biden many, many years ago. what was the terrible thing that we democrated did with republican support? some. we protected people that have never been protected before. the gay community is protected. we protected the immigrant women and men. we protected native americans and now their excuse is -- before it was the immigrant piece. and they said there was a technical problem, reverend, we fixed it. now they say oh u it's not fair. on indian land, what we said is right now, they'll get away with it. the tribal court has no jurisdiction. we fixed the problem. and let me tell you, the rate of violence against women are tribal lands that would just shock you. they have a three-times more chance of being beaten up. it's a nightmare.
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and the perpetrator goes unpunished. and that is the big sin. we took care of these powerless women and they have walked away from it. now, we can only hope to come back. eric cantor gave a big speech. i don't know if you heard it. he said i care about women. i care about children. i care and i care and i care. well, you know, it's easy to say. now do. and what you have to do is take up this bill and pass it. >> well, i also want to congratulate you. you your live bill act. senator bill nelson from florida announced that he will sign as a cosponsor. the first lady had a victor, 102-year-old woman who was a voter in florida. she sat in the box last night at the state of the union. she had to wait two trips to wait several hours to vote for the president. and your work in this voting reform is very important. february 27th, the supreme court will be hearing the voting
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rights act, section five. and many of us in the civil rights community will be there. if section 5 is ruled out as unconstitutional about the supreme court, this could really open the door to a lot of states bringing about some acts that a voter right's measure would not protect. we are about to undo what dr. king and others put on the books for us. and that's frightening, senator. >> reverend al, this is america. where we say everybody has a right to vote who's a citizen. where we say we are all created equal. where we have struggled and fought and fought and struggled. you know the history. and to go backwards on this would be devastating. so let me assure you that there are many of us right here that would stand right with you. when i saw that 102-year-old woman and i saw her feisty nsz, i tell you, she brought tears to our eyes.
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and there's a statement. what was the statement? i am not giving up my right to vote. and shame on certain areas in florida and for making people stand on line for seven hours, some people were online until 1:30 the next morning. i'm glad bill nelson was standing with me. >> no, i'm glad about it. i saw the lines. and this lady, last night, that's what real american democracy is about. senator barbara boxer, i'm going to have to leave it there. >> she's the face of hope and democracy. >> thank you so much. it's always great having you on. thank you for your time! thanks. >> ahead, they talk about change. so why isn't any republican denouncing ted nugent in the chamber? this is a guy who compared gun
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owners to rosa parks. where is the leadership? but, first, the water cooler story of the day. marco rubio's water gate. keep it here. more politics nation ahead.
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we're back on "politics nation." the republican's mark rubio's big night. and what a night it was. okay, okay, where was i? senator rubio laid out the right wing vision for america. oh, what was i saying? rubio bit the truth last night. i'm hydrating just like the senator. yet, we're having some fun, like the rest of america with marmarc marcmarco marco rubio's water female. look at that lunge. never breaking eye contact with the camera.
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it's being called rubio's watergate. even zero dark thirty. it lit up twitter. 92 tweets per minute. watergate. poland spring were trending and at least 15 parody twitter counts sprang up. senator rubio, he's in on the fun himself tweeting out a picture of his famous water bottle. but what rubio was saying before and after his water cooler moment wasn't so funny. that's coming upright after i finish my drink. we are gathered here today to celebrate the union of tim and laura.
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>> they talk about change, they talk about branding about not being the stupid party. the gop finally had their chance to prove it. here comes senator marco rubio with the republican response. he's been called the gop savior. the new reagan and the antimitt romney. the antiromney? really? >> raising taxes won't create private sex tor jobs. people can risk their own money to open a business. >> the president invested taxpayer money, your money, in green companies, billions of taxpayer dollars. >> wasting more taxpayer money on so-called clean energy companies like solyndra. >> more government isn't going to help you get ahead. it's going to hold you back.
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>> good democrats love america just like good republicans love america. >> i know they love america. >> i'll give you that last part. but the rest, is that the idea of change? let's bring in abbey huntsman and joe madison. thank you both for coming on. abbey, let's start with rubio's speech. hofs it for new and improved? >> you know, the fairy tale of marco rubio did not happen ever after. he felt that pressure. he was clear in his delivery that he was nervous, as he could have been. he had such a beautiful story to tell. his parents came from cuba. he took on college loans. but he doesn't have a policy to defend that beautiful story, you know? in that same sense, he'll say i
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also halt govt. >> the reason he's being scrutinized as a presidential candidate, one, he's being floated as that. two, you're on the cover of "time" magazine and you're doing the response to the president of the united states, duh, they may want to start scrutinizing. >> right. but it means you're going to save the party. it means you're going to bring something different to the table? i'm pretty sure paul ryan wrote at least half of the speech. so this was nothing new. it's almost like an empty suit. >> you know, joe, abbey is right. you expect something new to be brought to the table, not you're just getting a bottle of water off the table. >> yeah, right? . you have to also understand -- and i'm not feeling sorry for a guy who pulled up the ladder particularly after he took it out.
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he took about how he used student loans. he also talked passionately about how medicare was extremely important to his family. what does he do? he supports a party that, in fact, wants to cut medicare. he supports a party that, in fact, would even stand up to report gun control. i'm not feeling any pity for him. and i know he said, for example, that god has a way of reminding us how he's human. god also has a way of saying i don't like ugly. and it's ugly when you use the very thing that helped you to get where you are today. and then you pull up the ladder for folks underneath. could you imagine being opposed to $1.25 u $1.75 raise?
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>> my mother used to say god don't like ugly, and he ain't too crazy about pretty, either. last night, he talked about middle class ties. watch this. >> mr. president, i still live in the same neighborhood i grew up in. one of these programs is medicare it's especially important to me. >> i would never support changes to medicare that would hurt my mother. >> and then look at his record. not just the record of his party, his record that signed the pledge never to raise taxes. he, marco rubio. he blocked an effort to freeze
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stunt loan rates. he did, marco rubio. he said in 2011, he said, rubio, that medicare has weakened us as a people. so with all of that pagsz last night, his record personally, not just his party, is exactly the opposite of that. >> i think the word you're looking for is hypocrite kal. people hear a story and that's why the republican party calls him the savior of the party because they want him to be. he represents someone that represents so many americans. the problem is he doesn't have policies to defend that. it's hard to watch. >> joe, i have to ask you about this one. a lot of people talk about ted nugent to the speech. he was paralyzed in a firearms
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accident. he criticized the state of the union. nugent was asked by an nbc reporter about it. listen to what nugent said. >> he lied claiming that somehow, i didn't feel sorry for the victims of violent crime. that would take genuine fera gel brain matter. >> now, this is nuge, nt. fine, he is who he is. what was so amazing to me is none of the republican leadership, none of the gop leadership had the courage to stand up and denounce his presence there. fine, you get one obscure congressman who wants to get in the papers. but where is the leadership? how many times have we seen democrats have to criticize and question people that are bizarre
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doing things on the other side. not one of them stood up and said we shouldn't be in the chamber tonight. >> he pointed that out that the congressional black caucus is going to point it out. if there's anybody that knows about fecal matter, it's somebody who poops in his pants and walks around with it to keep it from being drafted. so, you know, you consider the source. and for a man to sit up and say he knows rosa parks, excuse me, reverend, you know rosa parks? i know rosa parkings: and i'll say it straight to ted nugent's face. he is no rosa parks. >> i don't think anyone could argue that. we also have to remember that we see this on both sides. we see extremes on republicans. >> but they don't get invited to the state of the union by a congressman.
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>> the courage to bring something different to the table. the courage to be that "saver yor" of the party. >> i'm going to have to leave it there. thank you for your time. still, ahead, the emotional moment that could redefine the gun debate and make america a safer place. but, first, music and media mogul entrepreneur activist, my main man, the god father hip hop, russel simmons is here. we're going to talk about fairness, voting guns and more. stay with us. so you say men are superior drivers?
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i'm up next, but now i'm singing the heartburn blues. hold on, prilosec isn't for fast relief. cue up alka-seltzer. it stops heartburn fast. ♪ oh what a relief it is! up next, music mogul, the only man that can bring occupy kanye west and al sharpton together, russel simmons. he's here.
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it is our generation's task, then, to reignite the true engine of america's economic growth, a rising, thriving, middle class. tonight, let's declare that in the wealthiest nation on earth, no one that works full time should have to live in poverty and raise the federal minimum wage to $9 an hour.
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>> it was a call to action on poverty last night. a call to level the playing field for all americans. fairness is the backbone of the obama presidency. but nothing in this world is easy. in order to make it happen, the people have to act. >> my fellow americans, we were made for this world and we will seize it so long as we seize it together. >> now is the time to vote for it. for immigration, for gun control, the time is now. joining me now is a man who's worked hard for change for a long time. long before the president was in office, media mogul music entrepreneur and activist russel simmons. >> you've been working for
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actresses for a very long time. i thought about you as we're finally seeing people addressing poverty because we have something very successful and saying wait a minute, success is based on what you do to lift the bottom, not just trying to sit on top. >> we're not going to be able to address poverty in an mediaimme way until we address our pursestrings. we talk about citizen's united or just the legal bribery that controls our government last night. if we can address that then a lot of the issues that have to do with poverty or how they work to destroy the fabric of the black community, that's because
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they pay $10 million. little bits of money to our congressman and our senators. that brings many billions back. that's an important issue that we haven't addressed. >> legal bribery? >> is it not? if you can move in somebody's office and promise them, you know, support systems that make them successful, we had a constitutional amendment. he's the war machine, what do you call him that day? what do you call them? investors in military. that these people that, 10-1, and hefrs out of office, after 25 years as a congressman. so we never got to them. >> the gerrymandering. one of the things you were very involved with all of us last year. the gerrymandering, the voting rights. that's how they manipulated people out of office. >> but all the money that
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supports these systems that promote unfair and unequal access to all the corporations and special interests that have a lot to do with controlling our interest. it's in the core, but everything, when we talk about poverty, we have to address that. >> when you hear the voting commission, they're starting, the president announced a bipartisan voting commission last night. what do you hope will come out of that? >> we hope that we'll draw fairlines and allow people to vote. we want the country to be -- it's another democracy issue. we want a fair vote. we have examples in the last election and the last few elections before that. that should have proven to us that we need dramatic reform. and we didn't do much. and we still vnt. it's something that the president spoke about and i hope we can address. >> taxes have been a defining
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battle for this president. look at this, the bottom 20 pnt of americans only get 3% of all tax breaks. the top 20% get 66% of tax breaks. i remember you yesterday standing at we occupy saying you don't mind paying more. people at the top will pay more. why are we giving the burden to the people that can least pay it? >> well, there was some at the top who would pay more. but others are spending lots of money to make sure it doesn't happen. so it went back to the issue that i talked about. if you have a big support system and people don't want to pay more, it's difficult for you to move or to vote to make those changes. and i think that's what happened in this country. it's the same as moving jobs overseas. it's the same as the corporate welfare that goes to the oil companies. there's so much that we give back because we're paid to give it back. and sometimes even democrats, you know, disguise bills and
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they say it's to help the poor. but, instead, it's to help their rich frenlds: i wanted to make that point tonight, reverend, that is something that the president did miss. i love all the things he said about his progressive agenda. and, today, the dentist told me something that was inspiring. and he said -- and i had realized this always. he said i don't like the president's agenda or the way he wanted to go about about it. he said, but, you know, it sounded like he could execute. but what's important is this could be a conservative way to make america better and there could be a progressive way to make america better. it depends on the execution and the thought process and the way that they go about it. the middle class could make the economy better, just as the rich could provide more jobs if they're given breaks. so the president has a route. he's in office and he's got to be able to get the people to support that rut. i mean, it would seem the middle class would like the idea of
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allowing -- and they should -- because they like the idea, they have to get behind the president and watch closely those people who don't support an agenda that helps them. >> a lot of that is also going to go to how we define our culture. i'm always survi i'm sur pridesed to see how the people can help. a lot of actors and actresses, they see that potential. they've been good over this last election. you saw that the president had a great turn out. and a lot of people who are successful, but artistic successful people, they are progressive. and they do want to help everyone grow. they know they can't grow without helping others. >> russel simmons, thanks for your time tonight. always great to have you. we'll be right back. [ male announcer ] citi turns 200 this year.
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last night, the president made an emotional plea on behalf of the newtown families and the others whose lives had been shattered by gun violence, including the family of chicago honor student, hadiya pendleton, killed just a week after attending the president's inauguration. >> hadiya's parents, nate and cleo are in this chamber tonight. their lives have been torn apart by gun violence. they deserve a vote. >> they deserve a vote. grks abby giffords deserve a vote. the families of newtown deserve a vote the families of oak creek and tucson and blacksburg and the countless other communities

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